Lewis Hamilton controls Spanish Grand Prix, Verstappen second

Lewis Hamilton took his fourth win of the year today in Barcelona leading every lap and seemingly coming under little pressure from behind. 

Hamilton put one hand firmly on a seventh world championship with a seventh grand slam victory.

Second went to fast-starting Max Verstappen who got past Valtteri Bottas at the start and stayed there meaning despite their dominance, Mercedes still only have one 1-2 finish this year in F1.

Bottas came home third after never really managing to close on Verstappen after a poor start.

A phenomenal start for Lance Stroll allowed him to send it up the inside of Bottas and take third place.

Bottas then came under attack from Perez but managed to hold onto fourth for the next few laps. Stroll was able to stay ahead until the start of the fifth lap where Bottas was able to slipstream past him and return to the top three.

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The race then started to become the strategic slug that Barcelona lends itself to with Max Verstappen in second keeping tabs on leader Lewis Hamilton proving the free practice long run pace of the Red Bull was no fluke.

As the stint went on, Hamilton was able to manage his tyres and turn up the pace when he wanted and the gap grew. Verstappen was in his pocket.

Verstappen then pitted as soon as there was a gap to the midfield pack and came out on the mediums.

Both Mercedes responded and normality resumed with Hamilton, Verstappen and Bottas, the top three.

The midfield scraps were what kept the race alive in the middle phase.

Alex Albon’s had an early pitstop for the hards and that meant that he came up on those ahead who were running longer stints and was held up.

He came up on Esteban Ocon, Lando Norris and Charles Leclerc who were all fighting nip-and-tuck.

Leclerc then became the first retirement when his engine cut out mid corner and he spun at the chicane.

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As the second stops came into play Albon and Carlos Sainz brought the fight to the Racing Points who had been running comfortably all race. But later on they dropped off and settled till the end of the race.

Lance Stroll finished fourth courtesy of a 5 second penalty for his returning teammate Sergio Perez. Perez was penalised for ignoring blue flags when being lapped by the leader Hamilton.

Perez still did very well to finish on track in fourth on a one stop strategy but the personal reward was obviously slightly less.

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Sainz finished in sixth after a solid drive in the points. He got an undercut on the drivers ahead and was able to stay ahead of Albon as he came out of the pits.

Seventh went to Sebastian Vettel after a supreme drive looking after a set of soft tyres from lap 28 until lap 65 which he finished on. Vettel ran longer on the softs than everyone did on mediums. He won the driver of the day to boot.

Albon being put on the hard tyres ruined his race because he completely lacked grip with no potential gain in terms of longevity. Pierre Gasly and Lando Norris were both just behind at the end to round out the points.

Daniel Ricciardo was a second off a points-finish in 11th with Daniil Kvyat in 12th and Esteban Ocon in 13th.

Kimi Raikkonen broke the record for longest distance raced in F1 on lap 38. The equivalent of 2 laps of the equator and finished where he started in 14th, after some scraps at the back of the midfield.

Kevin Magnussen was 15th with Antonio Giovinazzi just behind. George Russell and Nicholas Latifi were 17th and 18th.

Romain Grosjean half spun a few laps from the end and finished in 19th, rounding off the finishers.

Position Driver Team Time
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 66 laps
2 Max Verstappen Red Bull 24.177
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 44.752
4 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1 Lap
5 Sergio Perez Racing Point 1L
6 Carlos Sainz McLaren 1L
7 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1L
8 Alex Albon Red Bull 1L
9 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1L
10 Lando Norris McLaren 1L
11 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1L
12 Daniil Kvyat AlphaTauri 1L
13 Esteban Ocon Renault 1L
14 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo 1L
15 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1L
16 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 1L
17 George Russell Williams 1L
18 Nicholas Latifi Williams 2L
19 Romain Grosjean Haas 2L
20 Charles Leclerc Ferrari DNF